Sun Yingsha WTT Interview On Olympic Preparations and More

Sun Yingsha recently sat down with WTT for an interview on her Olympic preparations and her experience at the 2019 World Team Cup. The transcript (in Chinese) can be found here. We provide an English translation below.

How have you changed over the past few years?

The changes I’ve went through over the last two years, including standards for myself, actually I think it has clearly gone up to when I first arrived [onto the team]. When I first arrived, I was always in a fighting state of mind, and I would let it all out on the table. Now, in training I’ve actually seen my progress. Now when I lost a point, I feel like it’s a major pity. I’ve had this feeling since roughly last year’s World Cup, but I still think it’s not enough. I feel like every point should be very precious to me.

How are you preparing for the Olympics?

It always feel like I can never train enough. I still need to train every little aspect. I need to train until leadership, coaches, and I can see progress. Then I can feel confident in myself. If you want to be Olympic champion, then you will always feel that you have not trained enough.

Please recount your 2019 World Team Cup experience [Sun Yingsha came back from down 10-7 to win deuce in the fifth against Mima Ito].

I’ll often think about this competition. It’s been two years now. I’ve indeed watched it many times. I don’t just watch the last few points in the comeback. It’s starting from when we step onto the court, including the entrance and intros. I sometimes watch it all.

Because I feel like this feeling is something that only I can know, including my mood in the game and the scary situation I was in. I was down three match points, with the team score tied, and I had already used the time-out. But now when I think about it, especially during training, it really is the most precious match to me.

Sun Yingsha celebrates in her 3-2 win over Mima Ito at the 2019 World Team Cup
Sun Yingsha celebrates in her 3-2 win over Mima Ito at the 2019 World Team Cup

Compared to the 2019 World Cup, what mental preparations have you made for the Olympics?

That night, I was able to fall asleep, but I didn’t sleep that soundly. That match was already a high-pressure environment. Once I get to the Tokyo Olympics and go to the match, it may be ten times or 100 times more nerve-wracking. But I think having experienced it [the 2019 World Cup] before, this time it will be slightly better. At least I know this kind of feeling, even if it’s just usually, because international competitions are hard to come by these days, but I have a little ground on to stand on during training.

What do the Olympics mean to you?

First of all, the Olympics really are a stage that many athletes want to play on. In my heart, I find it equally super cool. And right now I’m just speaking from imagination, but once I’m playing in the Olympics I really just need to go out and compete. Athletes all look beautiful on the court, and if I want to win the achievement of my life, I think I must do this kind of thing well. The goal of the Olympics in my mind may never change.

Can you maintain self-discipline in order to achieve your goals?

I can definitely do it. Even if I lack some understanding or care of myself, I feel that this goal of the Olympic Games in my heart, including winning the Olympic gold medal, has always been impossible for me to shake.

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